Lets shoot straight. Churches are filled with people. People are often selfish, self centered and mean. When you combine those two ingredients with a dash of organization, emotion and self-righteousness you end up with a church fight.
This is not a phenomenon of that church down the street, the church that you used to go to or the church you read about in the blogs… it a simple fact of every church. Why? It’s simply because churches are full of people like you and me who are all selfish sinners covered by the blood of Jesus Christ. Were not perfect and we won’t be until God comes back and makes us that way. In fact we will all still struggle in sin and resort to selfish acts.
This week in Philippians we come to a passage (4:2-3) where Paul points out two people specifically (you know it’s bad when the bible calls you out by name) who are in one heck of a fight. In the passage he states two things about them… 1. That they have labored for the gospel. 2. That their names are in the book of life.
To tell you the truth, it is my temptation when someone disagrees with me at church to simply draw a ridiculous conclusion. (Please read in the best pouting voice you have.) “Well, if they don’t want to do evangelism through my program, they don’t love Jesus and don’t care about lost people.” Seems stupid doesn’t it. How often do we all jump to conclusions in church?
Perhaps the medicine for any church conflict is that we all might step back count to 10 and remember that these are our brothers and sisters who have labored for the gospel with us and that they are children of God. What if we allowed God’s love to reign, saw our brothers and sisters through His eyes and decided to focus our eyes on our mission and not on our differences?
As long as churches are filled with people churches will struggle with conflict. What we must remember though is that these are our brothers and sisters and more importantly God’s children.